Identify Species At Risk From Transportation-Related Impacts
Wildlife & Ecosystems
Research Idea Scope
Research problem statement – Not every species or ecosystem process is impacted by existing or planned highways. In each region of the country, different species are impacted by highways. Several unrelated attempts have been made to identify species at risk but no synthesis has been readily available. Related to this effort would be methods to identify when other mechanisms are more important to reducing the likelihood of species persistence, because once the key problems are identified it is more likely the appropriate mitigation method would also be identified. Modeling tools to identify situations and species at risk are needed.
Objectives – to develop methods to identify and understand the contribution transportation projects (existing or planned) make towards species persistence.
Research proposed – Synthesize existing works on species at risk from transportation projects and identify attributes of species at risk for general use across the country. Develop methods to identify and understand the contribution transportation projects (existing or planned) make towards species persistence, and develop related generalized mitigation measures for each category of species. Recognize that each region of the country will have different communities and mitigation measures.
Urgency and Payoff
If transportation impacts are not the limiting factor, or even a major contributor, to species imperilment, then mitigation of highway impacts is wasteful and ineffective. Identification of ways to determine the contribution of highway impacts will assist resource agencies as well as transportation agencies in making the best use of funds to recover species or to keep common species common.
ADC30, Ecology and Transportation Committee, as specified in the TRB Research Needs Database, 2009. (Submitted to TRB Database 8/2007)